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I found a tick! What should I do?
Medication Disposal
302 West Seneca Street - Ithaca, NY 14850
I found a tick! What should I do?

Directions on how to remove a tick can be found on the CDC website:

If you can not remove the tick, you should schedule an appointment with a provider in the office.  If you are able to remove the body, but the head stays in the skin, that is ok.  You do not need to try to dig it out.  The head alone will not transmit lyme disease.


The Health Department states that if the tick is attached for less than 36 hours, it is unlikely that it would transmit the pathogen that causes lyme disease.  Therefore, we recommend simply monitoring for lyme disease.  Symptoms normally start within 4-6 weeks and include viral/flu like illness (fatigue, chills, fever, headache, muscle and or joint pain, swollen lymph nodes), with or without a target lesion or bulls eye rash.


For patients younger than 8 years old:  There is no prophylactic medication for lyme in this age group.  We recommend monitoring for lyme disease. 


For patients ages 8 years or older:   We can give a one time prophylactic dose of doxycycline to help prevent transmission of lyme if: 

   1.  The tick was attached for 36 hours or longer.

   2.  The tick was removed within the past 72 hours.

   3.  You are not allergic to doxycycline.


If you believe you have developed symptoms of lyme disease, you will need to schedule a visit with a provider.  We will not treat lyme disease without seeing you in the office. (This does not apply to the one time prophylactic dose)